23rd March, 2016

2 years ago  •  By  •  4 Comments

EXPEDITION DIARY

DAY 23 – Monday 14th March
High winds 25mph & snow blizzards all day

After staying at Heimo’s we had 3 days of blizzards, really strong winds and a lot of snow. Made 30 miles today, we are making faster progress now that we are on trails.

 

DAY 24 – Tuesday 15th March
– 20º C

Snowed again all day with strong wind.  Deep snow on our trail we made 30 miles again today.
We stopped at a place called John Herbert village which is actually just three cabins, one of which we are staying in.  John Herbert was an Athabascan Indian.  We are going to take a rest day tomorrow because we are all exhausted including the dogs.

sleepingDog2k

 

DAY 25 – Wednesday 16th March

Rest day today.  We have still about 300 miles more to do but we are getting there.  There is no danger in what we are doing now it’s just slogging through the miles.  Not much overflow, and just a bit of deep snow now and then.  Last night, finally, we saw some amazing northern lights!

 

DAY 26 – Thursday 17th March
Sunny no wind -20º rising to -10º in the daytime.

We have left the Colleen River and are now on the Porcupine River.  Made 37 miles today, it has been good running, the dogs are on good form and we are clicking through the miles.  Temperatures are now warmer as we get toward the back end of March, though we have had very cold nights of -30ºC and -35ºC.
The trail is really good on the Porcupine and we haven’t had any real problems though we have just been through some jumble ice which you have to pick your way through a bit.
We have got to camp for another 2 nights and then we should be at Fort Yukon. The reports are good on the river condition from Fort Yukon to Circle, despite being impassable a few weeks ago. We are slowly getting ahead of schedule and will probably get to our destination at Eagle early I think. Saw another fantastic aurora borealis display.

landscape2k

 

DAY 27 – Friday 18th March

We camped last night.  We didn’t sleep much because the dogs were barking and howling all night because there was a pack of wolves that were howling as well.  They do it to let each other know about territory, because if two wolf packs get together there tends to be a fight, so our dogs spent all night barking and howling. We have had a Raven flying with us for a few days.

The wind has got up 35mph and gusting 45mph for the rest of the day, a big snowstorm is forecast for tomorrow.

Sorry for the gap on our expedition progress map, forgot to turn on my Delorme InReach!

 

DAY 28 – Saturday 19th March

Strong winds 30 gusting to 40 mph, snow, poor visibility, we will have to stay put today. Will try to move tomorrow, only 34 mls to Fort Yukon.

Forecast from Scarlett Hall near Eagle …..   They are pinned down by a storm that is dumping lots of snow and high winds all along the eastern interior here.  Snow today 2 to 4 inches, winds 15 to 30, gusts to 40 mph.  Same exact weather for tonight so total accumulations could be 4 to 8 inches of snow.  Tomorrow snow likely in the morning winds 15 to 25 gusts to 30 mph.
Monday partly sunny lighter winds.

Comments 4

  1. We are glad to see you are racking up the miles. Human endurance is one thing but how about those dogs? Aren't they incredible? I assume the humans lose body mass during this type of arduous expedition - how about the dogs? Eagle is down wind now so keep on going guys!
  2. Brad Snow
    I spent a couple of nights in the Amundsen Cabin in Eagle in 1974. I hope it's still there and available for you to use. I'm delighted that people are retracing his route again after so many years.
  3. Brad Snow
    Pay particular attention at the mouth of the Nation, Tatonduk and Seventymile rivers; leads often open up downriver of the mouths against the Yukon bank, fast and deep. Don't expect the YQ trail to always be safe. Give my regards to Sonja Sager when you arrive in Eagle!
  4. Simon Petrie
    Hi Tim, I sat beside you on the plane from London to Vancouver, and was really interested to hear all about your expedition. Looks like you are hanging in there! Wishing you and the team all the best. Regards, Simon